Create a 10 minute exercise that reveals biase - give me specific details on how to set it up and debrief

Based on the excerpts from Ed Batista's work, particularly the discussion on the benefits of affect labeling and the importance of making emotional discourse a habit, here is a 10-minute exercise designed to reveal biases through emotional labeling and reflection.

Exercise: Emotional Labeling to Reveal Biases

Objective: To uncover personal biases by identifying and discussing emotional reactions to a series of images.

Duration: 10 minutes

Materials Needed:

  • A set of diverse images that can evoke different emotions (e.g., happiness, anger, fear, surprise). These images should include people from various backgrounds, situations that might trigger social biases, and neutral images for control.
  • Writing materials (paper and pens) or a digital device for note-taking.
  • A timer.


  1. Arrange participants in a comfortable setting, providing each with writing materials or a digital device.
  2. Explain that they will be shown a series of images for a short period, and their task is to quickly label the emotions they perceive in the images or their own emotional response to each image.
  3. Emphasize that this is a personal reflection exercise and there are no right or wrong answers.


  1. Display each image for 20 seconds. After each image, give participants 10 seconds to write down the emotion they associate with the image or felt in response to it.
  2. Repeat this process until the 10-minute mark is reached or you have gone through all the images.
  3. Ensure that the sequence of images is varied to prevent participants from falling into a pattern of responses.


  1. Ask participants to review their emotional labels and reflect on whether there are any patterns in their responses that might indicate a bias.
  2. Encourage a discussion about how certain images triggered specific emotions and why that might be. For instance, did an image of a person from a particular demographic elicit a different emotional response compared to others?
  3. Highlight the importance of the RVLPFC in regulating emotions, as mentioned by Lieberman, and discuss how affect labeling can reduce distress and potentially mitigate biases by bringing them to conscious awareness.
  4. Discuss how biases can be automatic and are not necessarily indicative of one's values or beliefs, but recognizing and labeling our emotional responses can be a step towards addressing and managing these biases.
  5. Conclude by emphasizing the significance of making emotional discourse a habit, as noted by Batista, and how this practice can help in managing negative emotions and reducing the influence of unconscious biases in a professional setting.

Remember, the goal of this exercise is not to shame or blame, but to increase self-awareness and to understand the role of emotions in shaping our perceptions and reactions to others. This exercise is a starting point for a longer process of reflection and habituation in discussing emotions and confronting biases.